Can anyone explain what the "desktop mode battery charge" option does for the XPS 13? Is it good to use if I keep my laptop plugged in while at work, but use unplugged while using at home at nights?
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Welcome to the Community. Desktop-mode battery charge helps extend a laptop’s battery pack life cycle. When enabled, desktop mode monitors the charge status of the laptop battery, and if it spends most of the time at 100% charge while connected to the power adapter, desktop mode will automatically adjust the charge levels of the battery. The adjustments include regularly allowing the battery to discharge, even while plugged in. The benefits help slow the reduction of charge capacity over time and may even decrease the need to purchase a replacement battery during the life of your laptop.
NOTE: If desktop mode is enabled, users will see battery charge vary between 50%–100% while the power adapter is connected. To ensure batteries are charged to 100%, disconnect and reconnect the power adapter and the battery will charge to 100%.
The thing you should tell people is this. If they leave the laptop plugged into an AC outlet overnight and have this "dekstop mode" enabled and their backup software is supposed to make its backup overnight, this mode can shut the computer off at the worst possible moment, mid-backup. The reason it can shut off it that lets say the backup process starts at 1am. Computer is on AC power, battery is at 100% charged. Everything is fine. Then the "desktop mode" thing decides that 1:15 is a good time to start draining the battery. Since the laptop lid is closed and the power plan setting state that when the lid is closed the computer should shutdown/sleep/hibernate, this battery saver just killed your backup. I'd rather have a reliable backup. I can always buy another battery. I can't go out and BUY a backup. This software was not well thought out in the "playing well with others" department.
Just press the gear icon found on the upper part of your keyboard and it will show you the option to enable "desktop mode" thing. Mine is located at the upper right part of my keyboard. Im using Inspiron 7420.
Most current XPS systems the battery isn't removable. This mode just let's the battery drain to 50% then charge back up as to not lose charge capacity by always being plugged in and at 100%.
Does this affect the laptop's performance? I ask because in the windows power options, there's a significant difference in how the computer runs when "on battery" vs. when it's plugged in (wifi performance, cooling method, max CPU allowance, screen dimming, etc...).
So right now, with "desktop mode" enabled, I'm technically running off the battery, so does it default to the battery power configuration in windows?